Summary: Ahh, the perils of over-analysis. Eriol buys a souvenir for Tomoyo while in England, and gives it to her. Poor Tomoyo is left to analyze the gift in excruciating detail and undergo the trouble of naming it. One-shot.

The Three Little Bears

Twelve, eleven, ten, nine, eight—

Ding dong.

'So he's early,' Tomoyo thought wryly.

Tomoyo gracefully flew down her staircase and opened the door. It was no surprise to her that Eriol was standing in her doorway with a pleasant smile.

"Good evening, Daidouji-san."

"Good evening, Hiiragizawa-kun. How was your vacation?"

Some people teased her about suddenly becoming close friends to one of the most sought-after boys of eighth grade, but she wasn't bothered by it. She believed each individual had a right to choose what to believe, but she also believed that she had a right to spread undesirable rumors that would embarrass those particularly prone to falsifying stories and spreading those stories like a virus.

It seemed to her that Eriol also paid no attention to those who teased him about being close friends with her, either. After all, he was a mature boy who was, in a sense, literally beyond his years.

"England was full of memories, and was a wonderful place to stay. Thank you for taking care of my garden in my absence."

"It was my pleasure. You have so many beautiful flowers!"

"Arigatou gozaimasu. Before I forget, I would like to give this to you."

Eriol handed a small, long rectangular box to a surprised Tomoyo. "I bought this at a gift shop in England, and thought you might like it."

"…arigatou, Hiiragizawa-kun…"

"Now, I had better return home before my library becomes a wreck… Why Nakuru and Spinel prefer playing hide-and-seek there more than any other area is well beyond me."

A few minutes after Eriol had left, Tomoyo walked upstairs to her room with the white fragrant box in her hands. Perhaps they were candles?

She closed the door, sat down on her carpet, and lifted the cover of the rectangular box. Whatever the present was, it was wrapped with tissue paper. She gingerly brushed the white tissue paper to the side so she could see the contents.

They were three pieces of soap.

But not just any kind of soap…

These soap bars were shaped like teddy bears.

They were carved with great detail.

And they smelled really nice.

She had only recently realized she was beginning to develop feelings for Eriol. He was a wonderful, mysterious character! He was pleasant, always kind, and possessed a certain fresh, sparkling wit. Perhaps this was infatuation, and perhaps this was true love. Tomoyo didn't know, but was sure that Time would tell her in due time.

Tomoyo's heart pounded a little faster. Did Eriol know the myth of the teddy bear? Or was the myth known only in Tomoeda? Did the English know about the significance of teddy bears?

Perhaps so, but perhaps not. Regardless of whatever myths the English knew, Tomoyo still hoped Eriol chose these soaps for reasons other than that they smelled really nice, or as a subtle hint for Tomoyo to improve her hygiene habits. (Even though Tomoyo kept herself well-groomed, thank you very much.)

It was said that if someone gives you a teddy bear and you name it after that person, both people would become true loves forever.

Did soap bars count?

Perhaps a single soap bar shaped like a teddy bear didn't, but three teddy bear soap bars should!

Tomoyo then decided she would name the soap bars, but how would she distinguish them from one another? If she named them all 'Eriol,' the poor soap bars would have the same identity, and surely each bear deserved its own name! She wanted each one to have a special place and significance in her heart, even if a teddy bear made of soap were worth a third of an actual teddy bear.

Tomoyo set the three soap bars in front of her and studied them carefully.

"You!" Tomoyo said, pointing to the teddy bear with a barely noticeable chip on its right ear, "You shall be Eriol 1! You, with the slightly longer arms, shall be Eriol 2! And you, with the nose that's a little big, shall be Eriol 3!"

Tomoyo was a person of great taste, and recognized that the names she assigned the soap bars didn't quite meet her usual standards.

'Think, think, think!' Tomoyo told herself.

Maybe she could give these bears Eriol's last names, while assigning them names of the dwarves in Snow White. Although she had three bears and there were seven dwarves, Tomoyo figured that three of those dwarves' names had to be decent for very special bears.

There was Happy, Sneezy, Dopey, Grumpy, and… and…

Tomoyo actually couldn't remember any other dwarves' names. How could she only know 4/7 of the dwarves in Snow White! It was surely something to be ashamed of. …not that her lack of knowledge here significantly affected any aspect of her life except for the ability to relate to children especially fond of the fairy tale. She wasn't even sure if there was a "Happy." How could a dwarf be named "Happy"? Was that weird or what? There was nothing wrong with being "Happy," and Tomoyo did recall one of the seven dwarves who was, well, happy, but she felt like the name had to be something else. The dwarves names couldn't be that easy to figure out. Couldn't it have been named Jolly? What about Ebullience? What about…Gregory?

The three remaining names of the dwarves were Sneezy, Dopey, and Grumpy. Tomoyo quickly decided these names wouldn't do because they wouldn't dignify the sophisticate in Eriol. "Sneezy Hiiragizawa" would be an interesting name for a fellow who was always unruffled, though, wouldn't it?

…What about the three Billy goats gruff from that children's story? They were a trio, so assigning names to her three soap bars would be a simple task. Unfortunately, she could not remember any of the goats' names, if they had names at all. All three goats couldn't have been named "Billy"! Wouldn't children get confused about which Billy was being referred to?

Naming the soap bars after the Three Little Bears would be yet another option. Upon further reflection, Tomoyo realized that the "Three Little Bears" was a misleading title. There was only one little bear; the other two bears were a mother bear and a father. The parent bears were definitely larger than Goldilocks, so they couldn't be all that little unless Goldilocks was a midget. But still, she couldn't imagine naming her dignified and venerable soap bars "Mama Eriol," "Papa Eriol," and "Baby Eriol."

Tomoyo sighed. She would have to do with "Eriol 1," "Eriol 2," and "Eriol 3" until she came up with better ideas for the bears' names.

She started to ponder Eriol's possible intentions again.

So…did he actually know about the myth of teddy bears? She could not underestimate him for the simple reason that he was the all-powerful, all-knowing Clow Reed. But…at the same time, she could not reveal her feelings to him unless she was certain he felt the same way about her. She refused to reveal her feelings until then because she didn't want to burden Eriol with guilty or uneasiness if he didn't feel the same way about her. Dead end.

Was there a reason Eriol chose white-colored soap bars? Tomoyo knew that Eriol knew she loved all sorts of scented soaps, but why did he choose white soaps? White represented innocence, friendliness, and tranquility. White was the color of angels, of wedding dresses, and wedding cakes. Was white a proclamation of love? Then again, white was the color of death and the void, in Buddhism. Or did the shop only sell white scented soaps? Tomoyo had reached another dead end.

What about the obvious high quality of the soaps? Tomoyo could tell these soaps were hand-carved, but not by Eriol because he bought them at a shop in England. And any craft that was hand-carved was always much more expensive than factory-produced ones. The soap bears from Eriol looked so marvelous and detailed that Tomoyo already knew she would never use them. Did Eriol know she would never use them, too? Did he have a hidden intention in giving her something that would never be used? Or was this simply a thoughtful gift on his behalf, because he knew she loved fragrant scents and she admired fine craftsmanship? Yet another dead end had been reached.

Tomoyo had to refrain from banging her head against her wall in frustration. Doing so would only trigger her mansion's sensitive and elaborate security system and not much else.

She sat on her bed, rested her head on the comfortingly fluffy pillow, and proclaimed wistfully and barely audibly, "I wish Eriol would tell me his feelings soon…"

Because her bed faced away from her window, she didn't see the shooting star that flew across the sky right before she sank into her bed. She also didn't see a mysterious silhouette of a bespectacled, azure-eyed boy sitting on the tree right in front of her window with a Cheshire cat-like smile.


"Honestly," Nakuru uncharacteristically reprimanded. "Do you realize how big of a headache you're giving that poor girl?"

"For once, I agree with Miss Ruby," Spinel added, perched on Eriol's shoulder.

A/N: Ta-dahh!!! I hope you guys enjoyed this silly fic! It's actually a few years old; I was cleaning up the other day and stumbled across this and thought I ought to share it, even though the CCS fandom has shrunk considerably and many people have already moved on. : (

Action-wise, this was definitely not the most exciting fic out there. Instead, it's entirely about the turmoil raging inside Miss Tomoyo's brain. I hope it was still enough to amuse you all!

Happy Holidays!